Apr 24, 2023

What Do My Dashboard Warning Lights Mean?

Your car’s dashboard is full of hidden lights and signals ready to go off when something in your car changes or breaks.

It’s easy to freak out when you see a “check engine” or “battery warning” light pop on when you least expect.  Before you panic, or and think about where you’ll get the money to buy a new car, let’s take a look at these critical dashboard lights.

Knowing what they mean can help calm your nerves and lead you to a Kwik Kar location near you to make the necessary repairs that get your car safely functional again.

Check Engine Warning Light

Check Engine light This light is the most common sign of something wrong with your vehicle. It
illuminates when there’s an issue with the engine’s performance.

It could indicate a minor problem like a loose gas cap or a more significant issue like a misfiring engine.

The dashboard symbol turning on is NOT a death sentence for your engine. The most common reasons for a check engine light to show up include a stolen catalytic converter, a damaged mass airflow sensor, malfunctioning oxygen sensor, or internal problems within the engine itself.

Determining the root of the problem from the light alone is impossible and requires the tools and experience of a car expert.

If the light comes on, you must take yourself to a Kwik Kar near you that can quickly diagnose the problem and perform necessary repairs at a fair price. Kwik Kar offers coupons on major car repairs ranging from $25 Off – $1,000 Off depending on the scope of repair needed!

Battery Warning Light

The battery warning light indicates an issue with the car’s charging system. Sometimes, it battery warning light may not even be the battery that’s triggering the dashboard light, but a  more serious issue like a failing alternator.

The  alternator is a device in your car’s electrical system that generates electrical power, which charges your battery and powers your car’s electrical system (i.e. headlights, radio, A/C).

It also gives your ignition system the spark it needs to ignite fuel in the engine.

Much like the check engine light, you should never ignore this because it’s the indicator of a potentially bigger problem than an old battery. If the Battery Warning light comes on while driving, get the car to a mechanic as soon as possible.

After all, being stranded with a dead battery is never the best-case scenario since it puts you at potential risk for being stranded on a busy highway and in an unsafe position. However, if your battery does become an issue, visit Kwik Kar. We can check the quality of your battery and change your battery if it’s needed.

Oil Pressure Warning Light

Oil Pressure Dashboard Light The oil pressure warning light looks like a magic genie lamp on your dashboard, but the reality is far less favorable. This warning light signals low oil pressure in the engine.

Low oil pressure could lead to engine damage if not addressed promptly. If the light comes on, pull over as soon as it’s safe and check the oil level. If the oil level is low, stop in at a gas station, buy some oil, top it up, and take the car to a mechanic to check for leaks or other issues.

How Do I Check My Oil Level?

Fortunately, checking your oil level is easy with modern vehicles.

Once you’ve parked on level ground, and waited a few minutes after shutting down your engine, pop your hood and find the engine oil dipstick near the front of your engine.

Grab a paper towel, napkin or cloth, pull out the dipstick and wipe away the excess oil.

Insert the dipstick back into the engine completely, wait a few seconds, remove it and check the level. Your dipstick will have markings that indicate the maximum and minimum oil level. Your oil level should fall between each mark.

If the oil level is low, add oil to the engine through the oil filler cap. Be sure to check your vehicle’s manual and use the recommended oil type and viscosity for your vehicle. From there, run your vehicle a few minutes, shut it down, and start the process all over again until you’ve hit the right oil levels.

Brake Warning Light

Brake warning light The brake warning light illuminates when the handbrake is engaged or when there’s a problem with the brake system. Your brakes are one of the most integral parts of your vehicle, keeping you and your passengers safe.

So, if this light illuminates, it’s time to step into our “office” and get your brakes fixed or maintained! Take advantage of Kwik Kar’s Free Brake Inspection coupon to have your brakes inspected for your own peace of mind.

ABS Warning Light

ABS warning light Your Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS) prevents skidding when you brake hard.

The ABS warning light means your system isn’t working properly and could lead to a devastating collision if you ignore the issue.

What is the common cause of ABS system failure? Sadly enough, it’s good old fashioned overuse. When sensor wiring becomes damaged or contaminated, the system malfunctions and you could be on the road toward an unwelcome wild ride.

Kwik Kar’s experienced master technicians can diagnose any ABS problems, repair your vehicle, and keep the roads skid-free while you’re driving.

Tire Pressure Warning Light

Tire Pressure Warning You must maintain your car’s tire pressure when traveling the roads. Low pressure can impact your car’s handling, fuel economy and lead to a blowout.

This light may be an annoying one, but it is very important. Around 33,000 accidents a year happen because of low tire pressure. Don’t become another statistic!

If it comes on, check your tire pressure and refill it at a gas station if needed. If the light stays on or starts blinking, you likely have a leaking tire or a problem with your wheel. Both of these issues are things you must take seriously and get checked out before planning any more trips.

Airbag Warning Light

Airbag warning light The airbag warning light points to a problem with the car’s airbag system. If the light comes on, don’t ignore it. Airbags are a critical safety feature that can save lives in the event of an accident. Keep your family safer on the road, and take care of any airbag warning light that illuminates.

Keep Your Dashboard Light Warnings in Check

Dashboard warning lights can be highly confusing but are essential for safer driving and vehicle longevity. If your warning lights start flashing and you don’t know the problem, the Kwik Kar team can help you diagnose the issue.

From maintenance to complex repairs, we have your vehicle covered. Contact us today to schedule an appointment, or stop by as we accept stand-by clients!